LTE: IFC and Panhellenic Address Campus Concerns Amid COVID-19

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Edit: FSL sent The DePauw an updated version of the letter since it was originally posted.  This version has been updated accordingly. 

Dear University Officials,

We at FSL thank the University for their constant support during this extremely difficult time. The assistance and protection provided has truly helped the Greek community through these trials and tribulations, and again, we truly appreciate your efforts. However, after polling the on-campus members of our community, we found that 56.4% of our members on campus are dissatisfied with the current fall experience. The Interfraternity Council and Panhellenic Association have included the following recommendations and survey results to help portray the Greek students’ opinions and to offer solutions to these issues.

Our first request stems from a deep concern of our members’ mental health. We have seen a clear decline in the student body’s mental health, fear that that decline will have a negative impact on their grades. FSL is currently working on programming and infographics to encourage conversation and activism to help improve our student’s mental health. We ask for the University’s assistance in this effort, and the best way we feel the University could help with that effort is through more weekend programming and ways for students to socialize in a safe environment. The online events have been entertaining, but our students are suffering from “Zoom fatigue” and would greatly appreciate more ways to be together in person. 

The University’s initiative to grant chapters a financial incentive to host events on University property is extremely generous, and we greatly appreciate that incentive. However, a large part of the Greek experience is hosting events in their respective houses’ yard, and we would like for the first-year students to be able to experience these events before deciding on a house to join. Our proposed plan is that in order to register an event on Greek property, the chapter must A) be in good standing with the University (no unresolved Community Standards charges), B) provide an outline of their safety policies and goals with the event to a University official, and C) that the chapter leaders act as safety officers for the event and comply with University officials if/when asked about the event. FSL is more than happy to work with the University on the upkeep of these regulations, and simply asks for permission to host these events.

The final request we have of the University is the implementation of a “phase” plan, much like the ones we see states and the nation currently employ. We have heard from our constituents, and we truly believe that a phase plan would work well for the student population. Currently, the students can blame a faceless organization for all their problems, and a more personal approach partnered with a phase plan would truly raise the morale of all students. We are prepared to help the University figure out what defines these “phases”, and to help the University reach their goals.

Thank you for taking the time to read this letter and for giving us a platform to articulate our concerns. We are excited to work with you on these policies, and look forward to making campus better together.

Thank you and stay safe,

Interfraternity Council, DePauw University

Panhellenic Association, DePauw University